Sunday, May 20, 2012

Chloe Takes 1st Place

My weekend as crew chief was a resounding success as Chloe took first place in kid kart competition.

Matt was at Mid-Ohio racing with the Porsche club and I was at the helm for four days. Chloe was begging about driving at the first night kart race of the season and we didn't want to disappoint her. Logistically, it was going to be tough because Matt had my Navigator and I wouldn't be able to pack everybody and everything into the convertible. So, I totally went all out and made an executive decision to rent a SUV for the weekend to haul the kids and the dogs up to the track for the weekend. The only problem was, how do I get Chloe on the track and watch a rambunctious two-year old at the same time?  Matt had called the track owner to see if we could enlist some help in getting Chloe on the track. I am usually pre-occupied with Oliver, who isn't allowed in the paddock for obvious reasons, and don't know the ins and outs of kart racing (like starting the motor). Luckily, we had two nice, young men volunteer to help Chloe. So, in the end, we had a car to get us all to the track and help when we got there.
Oliver in the RV, with the dogs, playing on his sisters iPad. It was a hot day Saturday and the heat really wore Oliver out.

Oliver watching Chloe race while enjoying an ice pop to beat the heat.

We arrived on Saturday around lunchtime and Chloe's pit crew, Chris and Steven were ready and waiting to unload Chloe's kart, check everything out and get her on the track for warm-ups. The race was very relaxed this weekend as there was a big kart race in south Jersey, many of the usuals were not in attendance, but Chloe's kid kart group had three participants.
Chloe in the paddock with her kart.

Chloe and Chris, who was such a fantastic help,  prepping for the race.

Chloe has really improved her times. When she first began she would go around the circuit in just over 1 minute. On Saturday, he best lap time was 51.8 seconds, about a 10 second a lap improvement when she started racing.
Record of Chloe's best lap times that I texted to Matt.

Chloe drove fantastically, I got to see her pass for the first time, and she was really giving it her all as she spun out several times. In the second heat of the races, Chloe spun out and the chain came off. It took the track crew several minutes to put the chain back on and restart Chloe's kart. She was 3 laps down when she got back out but she fought back and when the checkered flag came out she had made up two laps and finished one lap down.
Chloe and her "competition"--aka her best track pals.

Chloe overtakes.

Widening the gap.

In the end, Chloe came in 1st place and had her first competitive kid kart race. Everybody at the track was so impressed with her driving and improvement. Matt was a proud father, keeping abreast of all the happenings through text message and in between his track time at Mid-Ohio.
The awards ceremony. Chloe takes 1st prize.

We stayed the night at the track. Oliver went to bed, Chloe watched the dirt kart races at the track adjacent to OVRP with her karting pals and I took the dogs for a walk. Lizzie went off-leash and flushed out some deer and caused Flash, who was on the leash, to make a fast and furious dash, pulling me off balance and catching my foot in a hole and twisting my ankle. Its sprained and sore, but manageable.

This morning we stayed at the track to watch Super Moto. The kids were riveted. Oliver even clapped and cheered. I may go above and beyond to get my kid to the go-kart race, but there's no way either of my kids are doing this....
Not on your life. What you don't see in this picture is the ambulance sitting 20 feet to the right of the racetrack.

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